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Thread: Deadlift Form Check

  1. #1
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    Default Deadlift Form Check

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    Is this form a problem? I do not get back pain but I do see what looks like rounding. My back is straighter at lighter weights but as I progress my fives and get heavier this is what it looks like. Iíve done multiple resets and it still rounds like this as weights get heavier.

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  2. #2
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    Yeah, your low back is not very strong, but that's probably because you never learned to set the lumbar extension procedure. There are several articles and videos on this website, so get busy.

  3. #3
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    Barís forward of midfoot, too.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rippetoe View Post
    Yeah, your low back is not very strong, but that's probably because you never learned to set the lumbar extension procedure. There are several articles and videos on this website, so get busy.
    Thanks Mark. Rack Pulls it is.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by NJLifter View Post
    Thanks Mark. Rack Pulls it is.
    That's not what I said.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rippetoe View Post
    That's not what I said.
    Iíve tried what you are referring to and have searched the depths of starting strength books and articles for cues that would register, I just fail to execute it properly as the load gets heavier. Iíve tried multiple resets. The only thing I can think to try is rack pulls to build up my lower back.

  7. #7
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    Hire a coach familiar with our material.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by NJLifter View Post
    I’ve tried what you are referring to and have searched the depths of starting strength books and articles for cues that would register, I just fail to execute it properly as the load gets heavier. I’ve tried multiple resets. The only thing I can think to try is rack pulls to build up my lower back.
    I'm far from an expert, but a few ideas:

    1. A cue that an SSC gave that helped me was (first without the bar) imitating a scared cat (lumbar flexion--a super rounded back) and then trying to do the exact opposite of that (lumbar extension)

    2. Post a video of you doing a set with a lighter weight--say, 135--so we can see if it's truly just a heavy weight problem, or if you're never getting your lumbar spine into extension, even with lighter weights.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by NJLifter View Post
    I’ve tried what you are referring to and have searched the depths of starting strength books and articles for cues that would register, I just fail to execute it properly as the load gets heavier. I’ve tried multiple resets. The only thing I can think to try is rack pulls to build up my lower back.
    Look at it this way: You need to be able to set your low back as the load on it gets high. If you are able to set your back when the load on it is low (i.e. lower-weight DLs), but not when the load gets heavier, how will switching to an exercise that reduces that stress help you get better at that? The rack pull is easy to do wrong. You have to work to keep your shoulders out in front of the bar more than usual, and your tendency will be to get too vertical, to be able to move the weight, and you risk exacerbating your issue, not solving it. (If I'm not mistaken, this is similar to what happens when people switch to sumo - good for you for not going there.)

    Learning to set the back from the beginning against a heavy load in the standard DL is the specific thing you need, hence Rip's recommendation for coaching.

    I'm curious, how big have your jumps been?

  10. #10
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    starting strength coach development program
    Quote Originally Posted by NJLifter View Post
    I’ve tried what you are referring to and have searched the depths of starting strength books and articles for cues that would register, I just fail to execute it properly as the load gets heavier. I’ve tried multiple resets. The only thing I can think to try is rack pulls to build up my lower back.
    The weight on the bar is immaterial to the setting of the lumbar, which happens before the bar leaves the floor. When the weight LEAVES the floor, it is possible that an extended lumbar is pulled INTO flexion, but this is not what is happening here. You are pulling the bar immediately after the "shins to bar" step of the five step deadlift setup, and completely omitting the "squeeze the chest up" step.

    Take your pick of cues: squeeze the chest up, belly between the thighs, bend the bar, wedge yourself in, etc. But make sure to really, truly focus on making sure you are trying AS HARD AS YOU POSSIBLY CAN to execute the cue. Give yourself like a count of three to make sure you are actually doing it. There is no volitional attempt to extend the lumbar spine, which means it can never be held in extension no matter how light the weight is.

    And rack pulls ALSO require an extended lumbar spine. They won't help you if you can't do it here.

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